J&J Forecasts Strong 2023 Profit On Pharma Boost

(Reuters) -Johnson & Johnson on Tuesday forecast annual profit above Wall Street estimates, as strong demand for its drugs such as cancer treatment Darzalex is expected to ease pressure from inflation and a strong dollar.

J&J’s large pharmaceuticals business is its major profit engine and the company is betting on it and the devices unit as it prepares to spinoff its consumer health business.

Pharmaceutical sales came in at $13.16 billion for the fourth quarter, above analysts’ average estimates of $13.14 billion.

Quarterly sales of the cancer drug Darzalex were $2.08 billion, beating Wall Street estimates of $2.02 billion, according to average of two analysts polled by Refinitiv.

J&J said it was expecting to earn between $10.45 and $10.65 per share on an adjusted basis for 2023, above analysts’ estimates of $10.35 per share profit at the midpoint.

The drugmaker expects 2023 sales to grow 3.5% to 4.5% on an adjusted basis, compared with a year earlier.

Shares of the drugmaker were up nearly 1% at $170.28 in trading before the bell.

The healthcare conglomerate also beat estimates for fourth-quarter profit as increased sales of pharmaceutical products helped it weather a hit from a stronger dollar.

Excluding items, J&J earned $2.35 per share, above analysts’ average estimates of $2.23 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

(Reporting by Manas Mishra and Bhanvi Satija in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)